Skin, the largest organ of our body, has a vital role to play. From acting as a defense against environmental hazards to regulating the temperature, the skin has multiple tasks to perform. All the functions performed by the skin are designed to help the body keep working properly. Skin care is a must in this case. So let’s have a look at the 5 most important reasons why you must take care of your skin.
5 reasons to take care of your skin
1. Skin is like a body guard
The primary job of your skin is to offer protection against environmental hazards, like germs and UV radiations. The acid mantle of the skin plays an important role in preventing bacteria from attacking the skin and causing infections. Clean the dirt, oil and makeup from the skin using cleansers and never forget to moisturize.
2. Skin is like a sponge
The outer layer of skin is designed in a way to repel water. However, it can also absorb oily substances that easily penetrate in between the cells. You must ensure that the skin products you use have ingredients that are safe for your skin to absorb. Pick from natural and organic products which have plant-based antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties.
3. Skin is like a raincoat
The cells of our skin need water but, if the surface of the skin does not have a waterproof effect, all the water in the skin would evaporate and the cells would die. To prevent the drying, apply body oil after a shower when your skin is still damp and seal the moisture into the skin.
4. Skin is like manufacturing plant
Your skin synthesizes chemicals. There are chemical reactions taking place in the cells which keeps the cells regenerating, repairing damage and also converting sunlight into vitamin D. Thus, your skin care products must have active ingredients that can stimulate skin cell renewal.
5. Skin is like thermostat
Your skin can regulate body temperature. When the body temperature rises, the skin can cool down the entire bodies by sweating and also increasing blood flow. And when the body feels cold, the diameter of the blood vessels decreases and reduces blood flow, retaining heat in the body.
5 ways to take care of your skin
1. Protect your skin from sun
One of the most important ways to take care of your skin is to protect it from the sun. A lifetime of sun exposure can cause wrinkles, age spots and other skin problems — as well as increase the risk of skin cancer.
For the most complete sun protection:
- Use sunscreen. Use a broad-spectrum sunscreen with an SPF of at least 15. Apply sunscreen generously, and reapply every two hours — or more often if you’re swimming or perspiring.
- Seek shade. Avoid the sun between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m., when the sun’s rays are strongest.
- Wear protective clothing. Cover your skin with tightly woven long-sleeved shirts, long pants and wide-brimmed hats. Also consider laundry additives, which give clothing an additional layer of ultraviolet protection for a certain number of washings, or special sun-protective clothing — which is specifically designed to block ultraviolet rays.
2. Don’t smoke to get a clear skin
Smoking makes your skin look older and contributes to wrinkles. Smoking narrows the tiny blood vessels in the outermost layers of skin, which decreases blood flow and makes skin paler. This also depletes the skin of oxygen and nutrients that are important to skin health.
Smoking also damages collagen and elastin — the fibers that give your skin strength and elasticity. In addition, the repetitive facial expressions you make when smoking — such as pursing your lips when inhaling and squinting your eyes to keep out smoke — can contribute to wrinkles. In addition, smoking increases your risk of squamous cell skin cancer. If you smoke, the best way to protect your skin is to quit. Ask your doctor for tips or treatments to help you stop smoking.
3. Treat your skin gently
Daily cleansing and shaving can take a toll on your skin. To keep it gentle:
- Limit bath time. Hot water and long showers or baths remove oils from your skin. Limit your bath or shower time, and use warm — rather than hot — water.
- Avoid strong soaps. Strong soaps and detergents can strip oil from your skin. Instead, choose mild cleansers.
- Shave carefully. To protect and lubricate your skin, apply shaving cream, lotion or gel before shaving. For the closest shave, use a clean, sharp razor. Shave in the direction the hair grows, not against it.
- Pat dry. After washing or bathing, gently pat or blot your skin dry with a towel so that some moisture remains on your skin.
- Moisturize dry skin. If your skin is dry, use a moisturizer that fits your skin type. For daily use, consider a moisturizer that contains SPF.
4. Eat a healthy diet for a clearer skin
A healthy diet can help you look and feel your best. Eat plenty of fruits, vegetables, whole grains and lean proteins. The association between diet and acne isn’t clear — but some research suggests that a diet rich in fish oil or fish oil supplements and low in unhealthy fats and processed or refined carbohydrates might promote younger looking skin. Drinking plenty of water helps keep your skin hydrated.
5. Managing stress is essential for good skin
Uncontrolled stress can make your skin more sensitive and trigger acne breakouts and other skin problems. To encourage healthy skin — and a healthy state of mind — take steps to manage your stress. Get enough sleep, set reasonable limits, scale back your to-do list and make time to do the things you enjoy. The results might be more dramatic than you expect.
Super-foods for better skin
Nutrition is important for health. An unhealthy diet can damage your metabolism, cause weight gain and even affect organs such as your heart and liver. What you eat also affects the health of another organ — your skin.As more is learned about how diet affects the body, it’s becoming increasingly clear that what you eat can significantly affect the health and aging of your skin. This article takes a look at 14 of the best foods for keeping your skin healthy.
1. Fatty fish for better skin
Fatty fish, such as salmon, mackerel and herring, are excellent foods for healthy skin. They are rich sources of omega-3 fatty acids, which are important for maintaining skin health. Omega-3 fatty acids are necessary to keep skin thick, supple and moisturized. In fact, a deficiency in omega-3 fats can cause dry skin. The omega-3 fats found in fish reduce inflammation, which can be the cause of redness and acne, and even make your skin less sensitive to the sun’s harmful UV rays.
Some studies have found that fish oil supplements may help fight inflammatory and autoimmune conditions affecting the skin, such as psoriasis and lupus. Fatty fish are also a source of vitamin E, which is one of the most important antioxidants for the skin. Getting enough vitamin E is essential for protecting the skin against damage from free radicals and inflammation. They’re also a source of high-quality protein, which is necessary to make the structural proteins that maintain the strength and integrity of the skin. Lastly, fish is a source of zinc, a mineral that’s important for regulating inflammation, the production of new skin cells and overall skin health. Having a deficiency in zinc can lead to skin inflammation, skin lesions and delayed wound healing.
2. Tomato for skin enrichment
Tomatoes are rich in lycopene, a carotenoid that acts as an antioxidant and also gives tomatoes the luscious red color. It helps scavenge the harmful oxygen radicals that cause toxic buildup resulting in skin rashes, acne, and aging. Scientists at the National School for Healthcare Science (NHS), examined to see if tomato paste can protect human skin from UV radiation-induced erythema. It was found that tomato paste can actually protect your skin against photodamage. You can include tomato in curries, salads, grilled veggies, etc. to enhance the flavor, color, and nutritional value of the food and protect your skin.
3. Nuts are good for skin care
Deficiencies in minerals such as zinc and selenium have been linked to acne in some sufferers, which is why nuts – in particular pumpkin seeds and Brazil nuts – are a good, healthy snack to get used to. Selenium helps to actively increase the number of infection-fighting white blood cells in the body and strengthens their fighting power, while vitamin E, copper, magnesium, manganese, potassium, calcium and iron are all essential to skin health and function. Keep a bag in your desk for when your 3pm snack attack hits.
4. Green tea good for healthy skin
“Since green tea contains polyphenols, making it an antioxidant and an anti-inflammatory, it can be used as a great toner to treat acne,” says Dr. Kaleroy Papantoniou, a cosmetic dermatologist. “It’s great for healing blemishes and scars, flushes out toxins, and also keeps skin supple. The vitamin K in green tea helps lighten dark circles under the eyes, too. So, put used green tea bags in the fridge for a great 15-minute under eye treatment.”
Green tea offers myriad health benefits. The epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG), a polyphenol, possesses antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and anti-tumor properties. Scientists have reported that EGCG in green tea helps protect the skin from harmful UV radiation and also nullifies the oxygen radicals. This helps prevent skin rashes, sunburn, skin cancer, and photoaging. Have a cup of green tea in the morning or in the evening to make your skin healthy and glowing.
5. Oranges for better skin
Research published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutritionshows that people who eat foods rich in vitamin C have fewer wrinkles and less age-related dry skin than those who don’t. Strawberries, red peppers, and grapefruit are all other great vitamin C sources, just to name a few.
6. Dark chocolate has good skin care properties
The sweet treat is rich in cocoa flavanols, plant compounds with antioxidant properties, which help hydrate skin and improve circulation. Women who consumed a high flavanol cocoa powder drink daily for 12 weeks experienced less skin roughness and scaliness compared to a control group. They consumed the equivalent of 3.5 ounces of dark chocolate, but that’s far too many calories for most women, says Lisa Drayer, MA, RD, author of The Beauty Diet. She suggests sticking to a 1-ounce portion, or 150 calories, to reap the good skin benefits without the weight gain. (This infographic will tell you just how good dark chocolate is for your body.)
7. Protect your skin with pomegrantes
They’re packed with polyphenol antioxidants, Dr. Perricone says. Polyphenols fight free radicals and regulate skin’s blood flow, giving it rosiness. One pomegranate or a few glasses of juice daily should do the trick. When applied to skin, the fruits’ antioxidants help smooth lines and moisturize, Dr. Bank says. Reduce wrinkles.
8. Sunflower seeds for skin care
In general, nuts and seeds are good sources of nutrients that are important for healthy skin. Sunflower seeds are an excellent example. One ounce (28 grams) of sunflower seeds contains 32% of the RDI for the antioxidant selenium, 10% of the RDI for zinc and 5.4 grams of protein. This amount also contains 37% of the RDI for vitamin E, which is a great way to make sure you’re getting enough of this important vitamin and antioxidant. Additionally, sunflower seeds are an excellent source of linoleic acid, an essential omega-6 fat that helps your skin stay thick, flexible and moisturized. In a large observational study of more than 4,000 women, a high intake of linoleic acid was associated with a lower risk of dry and thin skin as a result of aging.
9. Papaya for acne-free skin
Papayas are not only sweet and delicious they also contain enzymes papain and chymopapain, vitamins A, C, and B, and dietary fiber. The fruit improves bowel movement and digestion and also regulates blood pressure. This, in turn, can help you get a fresh and infection-free skin as better digestion means you will be flushing out toxins that can prevent acne and pigmentation. As stress can lead to high blood pressure and toxic buildup, papaya can help lower blood pressure thereby slowing aging. It has antimicrobial activity and helps to treat burns in children.
10. Red or yellow bell peppers for a beautiful skin
Like sweet potatoes, bell peppers are an excellent source of beta-carotene. One cup (149 grams) of chopped, red bell pepper contains the equivalent of 92% of the RDI for vitamin A. They are also one of the best sources of vitamin C, the antioxidant that’s necessary for creating the protein collagen, which keeps skin firm and strong. One cup of bell pepper provides an impressive 317% of the RDI for vitamin C.A large observational study in women found that eating plenty of vitamin C was associated with a lower chance of skin appearing wrinkled and becoming dry with age.
11. Use Olive oil for a radiant skin
Olive oil is not only good for weight loss but also improve skin health. Olive oil is loaded with vitamin E which acts as an antioxidant that helps flush out the toxins. Japanese researchers found that applying olive oil topically can protect the skin from UV radiation and reduce the risk of skin cancer. In another study, Chinese scientists confirmed that olive oil could help those undergoing chemotherapy by shielding the skin from radiodermatitis. Make your salad dressing with olive oil or cook your food in olive oil to help your skin get better from within. You can also apply it topically.
12. Milk for brighter skin
It is known that milk contains calcium, vitamin D, and other nutrients. What is not so well known is that milk also contains alpha hydroxy acids (AHA) that help promote good skin health. In fact, milk is what kept Cleopatra’s skin so glowing, soft, and smooth. The AHA works by stimulating collagen and elastin. It also promotes epidermolysis, that helps remove the upper dead layer of skin. Therefore, drink a glass of milk with breakfast or before bed, or you can also treat your skin royally by applying the natural white fluid on your skin to make your skin look even toned. If you are lactose intolerant, please refrain from consuming milk.
13. Almonds good for dry skin
Almonds are rich in alpha-tocopherol, one of the nutrients under the vitamin E family. A 100 g portion of almonds contain 26 mg alpha-tocopherol and helps protect the skin from the harmful UV radiation. Almonds are also an excellent source of flavonoids that contribute to reducing oxidative stress levels. Have 4-6 almonds with your breakfast every day. You can also add almonds to your salad, breakfast cereal or smoothies. Make a smooth almond paste and apply it on your skin for a brighter and healthy skin.
14. Garlic for skin rashes
Garlic is a miracle ingredient that has been used for years as an antibiotic. It is rich in vitamins C and B6, iron, magnesium, calcium, potassium, and possess antimicrobial, antioxidant, and anti-inflammatory properties. Therefore, it helps fight skin infections, reduces swelling and skin rashes, and flushes out toxins. Add chopped garlic to your pasta, grilled fish, stew, salad, roasted chicken, bone broth, etc. to make your food more skin-friendly.
Points To Remember To Get A Healthy Skin
- Protect your skin from UV radiation by using an umbrella and applying high SPF sunscreen all over your exposed skin before stepping out.
- Drink water and detox water to help flush out the toxins.
- Avoid eating too spicy food.
- Eat home-cooked food.
- Always remove makeup before going to bed.
- If you ride a bike or a bicycle, make sure to wear a biker jacket or full-hand gloves to protect your hands from UV rays.
- You can also rub a cube of ice on your face to help soothe your skin at the end of the day.
- Apply a homemade face pack every alternate day.
- Use a water-based or oil-based moisturizer depending on your skin type soon as you wash off the face pack.
- Talk to a dermatologist if you see patches of discoloration or flaky skin.
- Do not scratch the rashes.
- Do not burst a pimple as it can leave a permanent mark.
It is not an easy job to get flawless skin, but it is not an impossible feat either. Just eat the 14 foods and then see the results yourself.